A new study published in the Journal of Public Health Dentistry revealed that soft drinks erode teeth and perpetuate demineralization of teeth. Erosion is defined as the destruction of tooth enamel, causing decay, as the protective coating of teeth is worn away. Diet and regular sodas, carbonated drinks, flavored fizzy waters, sports drinks, fruit and fruit juices are all known to be harmful to teeth if they are consumed too often.
The research participants consisted of 3,773 participants. Sixty four participants revealed mild tooth wear, 18% had moderate tooth wear and 5 % displayed significant signs of tooth wear. The severity of tooth decay was linked to a higher consumption of soft drinks and fruit juices each day. Among participants with lower levels of tooth wear, the researchers found that milk was a more popular drink than soda or fruit juice.
Men had a 50% increased risk of suffering from dental erosion than women and decay was more sever and advanced with age. “Water and milk are the best choices by far, not only for the good of our oral health but our overall health too,” said Dr. Nigel Carter OBE, chief executive of the British Dental Health Foundation. “Remember, it is how often we have sugary foods and drinks that causes the problem so it is important that we try and reduce the frequency of consumption.”
“Dental erosion does not always need to be treated. With regular check-ups and advice your dental team can prevent the problem getting any worse and the erosion going any further. The more severe cases of tooth wear can often result in invasive and costly treatment so it is important that we keep to a good oral hygiene routine to make sure these future problems do not arise,” said Dr. Carter.
The acidic erosion of tooth enamel is linked to sugar consumption per beverage, defined as at least six teaspoons of sugar in each beverage. Milk due to its high calcium content and less erosive capacity had the opposite impact and milk or water are usually recommended as a replacement drink
The relationship between consumption of beverages and tooth wear among adults in the United States, Christopher Okunseri , et al., Journal of Public Health Dentistry, doi: 10.1111/jphd.12096, published online 28 April 2015, abstract.